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Milwaukee Community Justice Council Announces Subgrant Awards to 4 Community Organizations 


April 27, 2022 – It is with great pleasure to announce the Milwaukee Community Justice Council (CJC) has awarded four grants to local community-based organizations to fund projects that prevent criminal legal system involvement, advance equity, and support public health approaches to violence.

The grants — in amounts up to $34,500 — are made possible by the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and its Safety and Justice Challenge (SJC) initiative, a $300 million national effort to change the way America thinks about and uses jails. Milwaukee County joined the SJC Network in 2016. The network is now composed of 57 cities, counties, and states across the country that are launching strategies to prevent over-reliance on local jails, eliminate racial and ethnic disparities in the criminal legal system, and engage community members in systems reform.

“By creating the community subgrant opportunity, the CJC sought to recognize grassroots efforts that interrupt cyclical system involvement,” said CJC Director Mandy Potapenko. “This is the first time that the CJC has issued subgrants, and we are proud to extend tangible support for a range of community-driven initiatives focused on reentry and wellness, especially efforts led by persons with previous system involvement.”

Grant recipients include:

  • Clean Slate Milwaukee to assist individuals who are seeking to expunge records or receive executive clemency and connect people to community resources;
  • Milwaukee Turners to support Level Up From Stress, a mental and physical wellness program for justice-impacted individuals and those suffering from substance use disorders;
  • Project RETURN to sustain and expand Circles of Support programming, which provides a stable, supportive network for persons returning from incarceration; and,
  • The Way Out to expand organizational capacity and match persons with previous system involvement with supportive services and employment.

Grant recipients were selected for their focused, measurable proposals that integrate community engagement, help people with previous system involvement, and support the goals of the Safety and Justice Challenge as well as the City of Milwaukee Blueprint for Peace.

A press release about the community subgrant announcement is available here

Milwaukee Community Justice Council


633 West Wisconsin Avenue - Suite 409, Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53203

Mandy Potapenko, Director

(414) 435-1250




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